On Riva, owned by family
friends, at their ranch
in Pinedale, Wyo. “That
connection to other species, I
don’t know where that comes
from,” Ross says.
“I’m just trying to get people to calm
down and treat each other with kindness
and [to] understand that there doesn’t
have to be a winner or a loser,” she says.
“It’s amazing the response you get.
“I’d like to be a role model of how one
can conduct oneself in the business world
and be successful without throwing around
kind of reluctant to let go of some things
over the years because there’s so many
things I’m doing that I really enjoy.”
Case in point: For decades, she was
the lawyer for Weather Central, a leading
provider of broadcast and Internet weather
systems and information. Ross represented
the company from its founding in 1974 until
its sale in August.
IT’S NO SURPRISE, GIVEN THE ZOO AND
nature center, not to mention the bird-watching binoculars, that many of Ross’
outside interests involve animals.
“Working with horses, fly fishing, taking
the dog to the dog park—things where
I’m really completely off the grid,” she
says. “I bring my cell phone, but I don’t
stop and read emails every few minutes. I
think that’s really important, to be able to
immerse yourself. Working with animals
really gets my head outside my work.
“That connection to other species, I
don’t know where that comes from,” she
says. “I could just stop and watch a bird
for 15 minutes without even realizing that
time is passing.”
Ross’ latest equine companion, an
American quarter horse named Jake, died
last winter. It’s the first time Ross has been
without a horse since she was 15, she says,
and she isn’t sure she’ll have one again.
“I have to decide whether I want to
make another commitment to a horse,”
she says. “He was 28.”
Her dog, Huckleberry, a black lab, is only
7. Ross jokes that she has “shared custody”
of the dog with her retired parents, who
keep Huckleberry busy during the week
and hand him off to Ross and her longtime
partner, Carrie Nelson, for outdoor romps
on the weekends.
“My parents couldn’t give him enough
exercise and we couldn’t give him enough
time,” Ross says, explaining how the joint
arrangement solves both problems.
A big Green Bay Packers fan, she
regularly watches games with the same
group of pals at a friend’s farmhouse,
“with the horses standing outside the open
door,” Ross says, “looking at us like they
can’t figure out why we’re so excited.”